Thinning Overpopulation of Wolves
Makes Logical Biological Sense
Letters to the Editor / Anchorage Daily News / December 25, 2003
Bob Orabona's thesis, "Natural balance between predator, prey needs restoration
in Alaska" (Dec. 21), is too starry-eyed to be useful. All he offers is to decry
modern technology and pine over things he thinks must have been much better
thousands of years ago.
Look, nobody wants to kill all our wolves, or even a significant number of them.
In view of what we are told about predator/prey numbers, culling some, like thinning
overpopulations of deer or moose, makes biological sense. As far as I know, this
is a responsible part of human effort as stewards of animal populations all over
We expect game management, like other government services, to function as efficiently
as possible. Playing at accommodating vocal minorities like Mr. Orabona's Friends
of Animals, by capturing and sterilizing male wolves or tranquilizing and hauling
bewildered bears hundreds of miles from their home range, leaves a lot to be
desired. Our harried state game managers, using the tools they have been limited
to, have not been able to stem game population declines in many areas of Alaska
-- and not just around McGrath. Aerial shooting of wolves is a tool. It is expedient.
It has nothing to do with ethics, sportsmanship or fair chase.
It is not my sense that Mr. Orabona's position is right, or even reasonable.
-- Dennis Lattery / Eagle River
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